in , ,

HUAWEI MATEBOOK D14 – The all day thin and light

The Matebook D14 from Huawei is their new compact on the go notebook that looks and feels very familiar, which is good.

Specs

The matebook D14 we have here has a ryzen 5 3500u,8GB of ram and 500GB SSD. It also has an onboard GPU, The vega 8 from AMD. You can also get it with the Ryzen 7 3700u with the Vega 10 graphics.  Now the specs aren’t anything crazy but it will be great using it for business and school as it is nice and small. If you would want something with a bigger screen you do get the 15.6” model the Huawei D15  and then the top end unit which is available with a 10th Gen i7 is the Huawei X-Pro.

Pricing

Considering the price of this laptop you do get a lot of premium features for your bucks. With prices starting at 500 pounds for the 256GB model on amazon UK as it is not available in the US. But here in South Africa it starts from around R13000.

Body

The body is made of aluminum alloy, it does have a very nice premium feel to it. You do get it in 2 different colors, mystic silver which is what we have and then space grey. The design is elegant and stylish, so using this in a meeting with other board members you don’t have to worry about taking all attention away with flashing RGB or anything. Now the body does have some flex to it but it’s not too bad considering how thin and lightweight it is. With it only measuring in at 15.9mm and weighing merely 1.38kg

Taking a look with what’s going on around the body, on the left side you get a USB-A 3.0,HDMI and a USB Type-C which also doubles as your charging port, on the right side you get a USB 2.0 and 3.5mm headset and mic jack input. Now I have to say seeing a USB 2.0 port on a laptop in 2020 is a bit disappointing but disappointment is what 2020 is all about as we know, you can always just use it for your wireless mouse which does not need a fast connection anyways. Like I mentioned the type-C port that you get is also the charging port for the laptop which was quite surprising as you usually only get that feature with more expensive laptops so Kudos to huawei for that, to extend on that the included charger is also a 65W so that means its fast charging too which is another premium feature Huawei included. That almost kind of makes up for the USB 2.0 port, ALMOST.

Screen

Now the screen uses a IPS panel with a brightness of 250 nits, it is full HD display and it has a 84% body ratio. Now seeing as it is an IPS panel the viewing angles aren’t too bad. Now for normal use and some light photo and video editing the screen should be just fine, just don’t expect to do color grading work on it as the color accuracy is not that great at all. It has a sRGB of 69.9% and Adobe RGB of 44.3%. It does lack some brightness and you will struggle to properly see if you are sitting in a room with a lot of light. Screen lift has to be done with 2 hands as when you try to open it with one hand you do pick up the whole laptop with you. 

Keyboard

On the keyboard side, the keys do have a nice tactile feel to them making typing on it quite a delight. I didn’t experience any keyboard flex, the keys do feel a bit plasticky though but it doesn’t feel cheap. There is backlight but it is extremely soft which is sad to see but not a deal breaker. Now something interesting about the keyboard is this little camera button between F6 and F7,if you press it you will notice it pops up and reveals your webcam. Now this is a very neat little popup webcam so no need for taping shut your webcam as Huawei has you covered on that. Even if you close the laptop with the webcam open it just resides back and pops up again if you open the laptop.

Now on the right side of your keyboard is your power button, which doubles as your fingerprint sensor. What’s cool about this is as you switch it on it actually already takes your fingerprint and logs you in.

Trackpad

The trackpad is nice and large it has a smooth glide over it and the buttons are integrated giving you that little bit of extra space to work with. Its accurate and the clicks feel direct.

Performance

  • Cinebench 

R15 SCORE multicore 619CB

Single core 134CB

R20 Multicore 1375pts

Singlecore 318pts

  • Geekbench

It scored 718 on single-score and 2944  on multi-score. The OpenCL score was 8059

  • CSGO was playable on low settings with a 720p resolution with around 60fps. Which is really not the greatest but it can at least play some games.
  • PCMark

We benchmarked it on 3D marks Night Raid benchmark and it got a score of 9019

SSD

The SSD is a Nvme SSD which is really nice and fast and we couldn’t complain about that at all.

Temps

The laptop stayed cool most of the time, only when put under a lot of stress did we really notice it going up to around 80 degrees celsius and still stayed quiet as well. We didn’t experience any thermal throttling which is really good too.

Battery

The battery on the laptop is a 56Wh battery, it charges full in about 2 hours. It got about 7 hours of work time playing videos on the full 250 nits with power saving mode on. Which isn’t the greatest but it will get you through a stage 4 loadshedding at least. Luckily you do have that fast charger included.

Charger

Speaking of which, it’s a 65W type-c charger so if you have a newer phone you can charge that with the charger as well. For a laptop charger it is nice and small, it’s basically a big cell phone charger. 

Now a very nice feature of the matebooks is this feature called Huawei Share, now note that it is only for Huawei phone users with EMUI 10 and up. Now you just switch on Huawei share on your supported phone and tap your phone on the sticker on the laptop. This gives you a mirror image of your phone on the laptop screen and from there you can drag and drop files to copy from and to the phone or laptop. Pretty nifty.

Gaming

Now if you would want to, the D14 can do some light gaming, the vega 8 chip isn’t the best GPU chip out there but if you would want to you could play some fortnite or CS:GO on the laptop.

Cooling

The cooling on the D14 was pretty decent as I didn’t really notice it getting to hot or too loud for that matter, only really when I was gaming on it but like I said the D14 wasn’t made to game on.

Speakers

Something I loved was the bottom front speakers. For a laptop they are really not bad. They were loud enough to be able to watch a movie and listen to some music. They had some bass and I was quite impressed honestly. Now if you are sitting on the bed you will most likely cover them up and get a muffled sound but it is still avoidable.

Conclusion

So in conclusion, The Huawei Matebook D14 is a very good all rounder. With very nice build quality, a lot of premium features like the type-c fast charging and recessed webcam, making it a very attractive laptop for business or school use, especially being so lightweight and small. I would recommend this for people that travels a lot for work. So thanks for Huawei for sending over the Matebook D14 for this review.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Written by Ruan Bronkhorst

Meze 99 Neo – For Gamers With A More Classic Side

HUAWEI GT 2e – Smart Watch REVIEW